Croatia the Republic of Croatia, is a country at the crossroads of Central and Southeast Europe, on the Adriatic Sea. It borders Slovenia to the northwest, Hungary to the northeast, Serbia to the east and Herzegovina, Montenegro to the southeast, sharing a maritime border with Italy, its capital, forms one of the country's primary subdivisions, along with twenty counties. Croatia has an area of 56,594 square kilometres and a population of 4.28 million, most of whom are Roman Catholics. Inhabited since the Paleolithic Age, the Croats arrived in the area in the 6th century and organised the territory into two duchies by the 9th century. Croatia was first internationally recognized as an independent state on 7 June 879 during the reign of duke Branimir. Tomislav became the first king by 925, elevating Croatia to the status of a kingdom, which retained its sovereignty for nearly two centuries. During the succession crisis after the Trpimirović dynasty ended, Croatia entered a personal union with Hungary in 1102.
In 1527, faced with Ottoman conquest, the Croatian Parliament elected Ferdinand I of Austria to the Croatian throne. In October 1918, in the final days of World War I, the State of Slovenes and Serbs, independent from Austria-Hungary, was proclaimed in Zagreb, in December 1918 it was merged into the Kingdom of Serbs and Slovenes. Following the Axis invasion of Yugoslavia in April 1941, most of the Croatian territory was incorporated into the Nazi-backed client-state which led to the development of a resistance movement and the creation of the Federal State of Croatia which after the war become a founding member and a federal constituent of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. On 25 June 1991, Croatia declared independence, which came wholly into effect on 8 October of the same year; the Croatian War of Independence was fought for four years following the declaration. The sovereign state of Croatia is a republic governed under a parliamentary system and a developed country with a high standard of living.
It is a member of the European Union, the United Nations, the Council of Europe, NATO, the World Trade Organization, a founding member of the Union for the Mediterranean. As an active participant in the UN peacekeeping forces, Croatia has contributed troops to the NATO-led mission in Afghanistan and took a non-permanent seat on the UN Security Council for the 2008–2009 term. Since 2000, the Croatian government has invested in infrastructure transport routes and facilities along the Pan-European corridors. Croatia's economy is dominated by service and industrial sectors and agriculture. Tourism is a significant source of revenue, with Croatia ranked among the top 20 most popular tourist destinations in the world; the state controls a part of the economy, with substantial government expenditure. The European Union is Croatia's most important trading partner. Croatia provides a social security, universal health care system, a tuition-free primary and secondary education, while supporting culture through numerous public institutions and corporate investments in media and publishing.
The name of Croatia derives from Medieval Latin Croātia. Itself a derivation of North-West Slavic *Xrovat-, by liquid metathesis from Common Slavic period *Xorvat, from proposed Proto-Slavic *Xъrvátъ which comes from Old Persian *xaraxwat-; the word is attested by the Old Iranian toponym Harahvait-, the native name of Arachosia. The origin of the name is uncertain, but is thought to be a Gothic or Indo-Aryan term assigned to a Slavic tribe; the oldest preserved record of the Croatian ethnonym *xъrvatъ is of variable stem, attested in the Baška tablet in style zvъnъmirъ kralъ xrъvatъskъ. The first attestation of the Latin term is attributed to a charter of Duke Trpimir from the year 852; the original is lost, just a 1568 copy is preserved, leading to doubts over the authenticity of the claim. The oldest preserved stone inscription is the 9th-century Branimir Inscription found near Benkovac, where Duke Branimir is styled Dux Cruatorvm; the inscription is not believed to be dated but is to be from during the period of 879–892, during Branimir's rule.
The area known as Croatia today was inhabited throughout the prehistoric period. Fossils of Neanderthals dating to the middle Palaeolithic period have been unearthed in northern Croatia, with the most famous and the best presented site in Krapina. Remnants of several Neolithic and Chalcolithic cultures were found in all regions of the country; the largest proportion of the sites is in the river valleys of northern Croatia, the most significant cultures whose presence was discovered include Baden, Starčevo, Vučedol cultures. The Iron Age left traces of the Celtic La Tène culture. Much the region was settled by Illyrians and Liburnians, while the first Greek colonies were established on the islands of Hvar, Korčula, Vis. In 9 AD the territory of today's Croatia became part of the Roman Empire. Emperor Diocletian had a large palace built in Split to which he retired after his abdication in AD 305. During the 5th century, the last de jure Western emperor last Western Roman Emperor Julius Nepos ruled his small realm from the palace after fleeing Italy to go into exile in 475.
The period ends with Avar and Croat invasions in the first half of the 7th century and destruction of all Roman towns. Roman survivors retreated to more favourable sites on the coast and mountains; the city of Dubrovnik was founded by such survivors from Epidaurum. The ethnogenesis of Croats is uncertain an
The Korana is a river in central Croatia and west Bosnia and Herzegovina. The river has a total length of 138.6 km and watershed area of 2,301.5 km2. The river's name is derived from Proto-Indo-European *karr-, "rock", it was recorded in the 13th century as Corona. Korana rises in the eastern parts of Lika, creates the world-famous Plitvice Lakes, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Downstream from Plitvice Lakes the Korana river forms a 25 kilometers long border between Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina near Cazin. From there it flows northwards through Croatia, where it reaches the river Kupa at Karlovac; the soil of the karst region, through which this river flows consists of limestone. Under certain physical and chemical conditions the river is creating new soil from plants; the river Slunjčica flows into Korana at Rastoke/Slunj, the river Mrežnica flows into it at Karlovac. Plitvice Lakes Una Šimunović, Petar. "Predantički toponimi u današnjoj Hrvatskoj". Folia onomastica Croatica. Zagreb: Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts: 147–214.
Retrieved 18 January 2016. Karlovac: četiri rijeke - jedan grad
Rijeka is the principal seaport and the third-largest city in Croatia. It is located in Primorje-Gorski Kotar County on Kvarner Bay, an inlet of the Adriatic Sea and has a population of 128,624 inhabitants; because of its strategic position and its excellent deep-water port, the city was fiercely contested among Italy and Croatia, changing hands and demographics many times over centuries. According to the 2011 census data, the overwhelming majority of its citizens are Croats, along with small numbers of Bosniaks and Serbs; the city has a strong sense of identity and the autochthonous inhabitants of Rijeka are referred to as Fiumans. Rijeka is the main city of Primorje-Gorski Kotar County; the city's economy depends on shipbuilding and maritime transport. Rijeka hosts the Croatian National Theatre Ivan pl. Zajc, first built in 1765, as well as the University of Rijeka, founded in 1973 but with roots dating back to 1632 School of Theology. Apart from Croatian and Italian, linguistically the city is home to its own unique dialect of the Venetian language, with an estimated 20,000 speakers among the autochthonous Italians and other minorities.
Fiuman served as the main lingua franca between the many ethnicities inhabiting the multiethnic port-town. In certain suburbs of the modern extended municipality the autochthonous population still speaks the Chakavian tongue, a dialect of the Croatian language. In 2016, Rijeka was selected as the European Capital of Culture for 2020, alongside Galway, Republic of Ireland. Rijeka was called Tharsatica, Vitopolis, or Flumen in Latin; the city is called Rijeka in Croatian, Reka in Slovene, Reka or Rika in the local dialects of the Chakavian language. It is called Fiume in Italian. All these names mean "river" in their respective languages. Meanwhile, Hungarian has adopted the Italian name while in German the city has been called Sankt Veit am Flaum—St Vito on the river Flaum—or Pflaum. Rijeka is located in western Croatia, 131 kilometres southwest of the capital, Zagreb, on the northern coast of Rijeka Bay, as part of a larger Kvarner Gulf of the Adriatic Sea, a large bay Mediterranean Sea most indented to the European mainland.
The Bay of Rijeka, bordered by Vela Vrata, Srednja Vrata and Mala Vrata is connected to the Bay of Kvarner and is deep enough for the biggest sailing ships. The City of Rijeka lies at the mouth of river Rječina and in the Vinodol micro-region of the Croatian coast. Two important land transport routes start in Rijeka due to its location; the first route is to the Pannonian Basin given that Rijeka is located alongside the narrowest point of the Dinaric Alps. The other route, across Postojna Gate connects Rijeka with Slovenia and beyond. Though traces of Neolithic settlements can be found in the region, the earliest modern settlements on the site were Celtic Tharsatica on the hill, the tribe of mariners, the Liburni, in the natural harbour below; the city long retained its dual character. Pliny mentioned Tarsatica in his Natural History. In the time of Augustus, the Romans rebuilt Tharsatica as a municipium Flumen, situated on the right bank of small river Rječina, it became a city within the Roman Province of Dalmatia until the 6th century.
After the 4th century Rijeka was rededicated to St. Vitus, the city's patron saint, as Terra Fluminis sancti Sancti Viti or in German Sankt Veit am Pflaum. From the 5th century onwards, the town was ruled successively by the Ostrogoths, the Byzantines, the Lombards, the Avars. Croats settled the city starting in the 7th century giving it Rika svetoga Vida. At the time, Rijeka was a feudal stronghold surrounded by a wall. At the center of the city, its highest point, was a fortress. In 799 Rijeka was attacked by the Frankish troops of Charlemagne, their Siege of Trsat was at first repulsed, during which the Frankish commander Duke Eric of Friuli was killed. However, the Frankish forces occupied and devastated the castle, while the Duchy of Croatia passed under the overlordship of the Carolingian Empire. From about 925, the town was part of the Kingdom of Croatia, from 1102 in personal union with Hungary. Trsat Castle and the town was rebuilt under the rule of the House of Frankopan. In 1288 the Rijeka citizens signed the Law codex of Vinodol, one of the oldest codes of law in Europe.
Rijeka rivalled with Venice when it was purchased by the Habsburg emperor Frederick III, Archduke of Austria in 1466. It would remain under Habsburg overlordship for over 450 years, except for French rule between 1805 and 1813, until its occupation by Croatian and subsequently Italian irregulars at the end of World War I. After coming under Habsburg rule in 1466, the town was attacked and plundered by Venetian forces in 1509. While Ottoman forces attacked the town several times, they never occupied it. From the 16th century onwards, Rijeka was rebuilt in its present Renaissance and Baroque style. Emperor Charles VI declared the Port of Rijeka a free port in 1719 and had the trade route to Vienna expanded in 1725. By order of Empress Maria Theresa in
Croatian Democratic Union
The Croatian Democratic Union is a conservative political party and the main centre-right political party in Croatia. It is one of the two major contemporary political parties in Croatia, along with the centre-left Social Democratic Party, it is the largest party in the Sabor with 55 seats. The HDZ ruled Croatia from 1990 after the country gained independence from Yugoslavia until 2000 and, in coalition with junior partners, from 2003 to 2011, since 2016; the party is a member of the European People's Party. HDZ's leader, Andrej Plenković, is the current Prime Minister of Croatia, having taken office following the 2016 Parliamentary Election; the HDZ was founded on 17 June 1989 by Croatian dissidents led by Franjo Tuđman. It was registered on 25 January 1990; the HDZ held its first convention on 24–25 February 1990, when Franjo Tuđman was elected its president. When the party was founded, the government of the Socialist Republic of Croatia just introduced a multi-party system in Croatia and scheduled elections for the Croatian Parliament.
The HDZ began as a nationalist party, but included former Partisans and members of the Communist establishment, such as Josip Manolić and Josip Boljkovac. President Tuđman and other HDZ officials traveled abroad and gathered large financial contributions from Croatian expatriates. On the eve of the 1990 parliamentary elections, the ruling League of Communists of Croatia saw such tendencies within the HDZ as an opportunity to remain in power. At the beginning of democracy the communists called HDZ "the party of dangerous intentions"; the HDZ won a majority in the Croatian Parliament, Croatia became one of the few countries of Eastern Europe where Communist single party rule was replaced by anti-Communist single party rule. May 30, 1990 - the day the HDZ formally took power - was celebrated as Statehood Day, a public holiday in Croatia; the presidential elections took place in 1992 and Tuđman, who would remain as undisputed party leader until his death in 1999, was elected president. The party ruled Croatia throughout the 1990s and under its leadership, Croatia became independent, was internationally recognized, consolidated all of its pre-war territory.
During that period, the HDZ won both 1995 parliamentary elections. As it advocated Croatian independence, the HDZ was quite unpopular with the Serb minority, others who preferred to see Croatia remain inside the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia; this was one of the factors contributing to the creation of the Republic of Serbian Krajina and the subsequent armed conflict in neighboring Bosnia-Herzegovina. The role of the HDZ in those events is matter of controversy in Croatia, where some tend to view HDZ policy in the early stages of the conflict as extremist and a contributing factor in the escalation of violence, while others see the HDZ as having appeased Serbia and the Yugoslav People's Army, therefore, being responsible for Croatia being unprepared for defense. However, the policies of Tuđman and the HDZ shifted according to the circumstances; the HDZ began to lead Croatia toward political and economic transition from communism to capitalism. Notably, HDZ governments implemented privatization in the country, in a manner that critics consider sub-optimal, at times illegal, due to the selective nature of the nationalizations.
According to the HDZ, this process proved a useful distraction from dealing with the baggage of post World War II communist nationalizations. In fact it was the HDZ in 1992 which enacted into law the right of corporations the right to formally register themselves as the owners of nationalized property, thus completing their own version of a process of quasi-nationalization started by the communist regime after WWII, in different targeted areas for their own gain; as a result of these, other, planned before the break-up of Yugoslavia, many "tycoons" emerged in a pattern of state-sponsored loans brokered with HDZ influence, with the purpose of dissolving state ownership. This model was abused, not only by the HDZ, but by other political parties. Not all of the nationalized property was dealt with in this way; the property of those who could lobby the HDZ, or who had substantial influence in Croatian politics, was returned without much delay, while others had to wait for justice. Property returned included possessions nationalized from the Catholic Church or from known individuals such as Gavrilović, the owner of a major meat-producing factory in Petrinja, south of Zagreb.
Restitution for land seized during the break-up of Yugoslavia is still of great public concern. All this, together with Tuđman's death in December 1999, affected the 2000 parliamentary elections. Although the HDZ remained the largest single party, it was defeated by a left-centre coalition of six opposition parties and many saw the large turnout as a referendum against the HDZ, just as the 1990 elections had been seen as a referendum on Communism and Yugoslavia; this impression was underlined at the subsequent presidential election, when the HDZ candidate Mate Granić favored to win, finished third and therefore failed to enter the second round of voting, won by Stipe Mesić. In the period from 2000 and 2003, several businessmen who became tycoons under the initial HDZ rule were trialed and convicted for alleged abuses, though in general the privatization process implemented by the HDZ remained unaltered; this period proved to be a low point for the HDZ and many thought that party c
The Mrežnica is a river in Karlovac County, Croatia. It is 63 kilometres long and its basin covers an area of 64 square kilometres. Mrežnica is considered special due to its large number of waterfalls, totalling 93, it rises in Kordun, west of Slunj, flows northwards, in parallel to Dobra and Korana, through Generalski Stol and Duga Resa, when it flows into the Korana in the south of Karlovac. The Gojak Hydroelectric Power Plant is a high pressure diversion plant which harnesses the river power of the Ogulinska Dobra and Mrežnica rivers
The Uskoks were irregular soldiers in Habsburg Croatia that inhabited areas on the eastern Adriatic coast and surrounding territories during the Ottoman wars in Europe. Etymologically, the word uskoci. Bands of Uskoks fought a guerrilla war against the Ottomans, they formed small units and rowed swift boats. Since the uskoks were checked on land and were paid their annual subsidy, they resorted to acts of piracy; the exploits of the Uskoks contributed to a renewal of war between the Ottoman Empire. An curious picture of contemporary manners is presented by the Venetian agents, whose reports on this war resemble a knightly chronicle of the Middle Ages; these chronicles contain information pertaining to single combats and other chivalrous adventures. Many of these troops served abroad. At the Battle of Lepanto in 1571, for example, a Dalmatian squadron assisted the allied fleets of Spain, Venice and the Papal States to crush the Ottoman navy. After a series of incidents that escalated into the Uskok War, the Uskok activity in their stronghold of Senj ceased.
The Ottoman conquest of Bosnia and Herzegovina during the early years of the 16th century drove large numbers of ethnic Croats and Serbs from their homes, which in the town of Klis prompted the formation of the Uskok military. Large numbers of Serb fugitives from Bosnia and Serbia fleeing the Ottomans, joined the ranks of the Uskok bands. In 1522 the border territory of Senj was taken over by the Habsburgs under the authority of Archduke Ferdinand, forming a state-controlled Militärgrenze, or Military Frontier; the Austrian Emperor Ferdinand I instituted a system of planting colonies of defenders along the Military Frontier. Moreover, the Uskoks were promised an annual subsidy in return for their services. Owing to its location, Klis Fortress was an important defensive position which stands on the route by which the Ottomans could penetrate the mountain barrier separating the coastal lowlands from around Split in Croatia, from Ottoman-held Bosnia. Numerous refugees from Ottoman areas began settling along this territory, crossing the border to escape Ottoman attacks.
Christian guerilla resistance in Ottoman-occupied areas of Dalmatia and Bosnia caused these people to flee and settle down, first at the fortress of Klis along the Military Frontier at Senj. A body of these "uskoks" led by Croatian captain Petar Kružić used the base at Klis both to hold the Turks at bay, to engage in marauding and piracy against coastal shipping. Although nominally accepting the sovereignty of the Habsburg Emperor Ferdinand I, who obtained the Croatian crown in 1527, Kružić and his freebooting Uskoks were a law unto themselves. After Petar Kružić's death, the lack of water supply, the defenders of Klis surrendered to the Ottomans in exchange for their freedom. On March 12, 1537, the town and fortress was given up to the Ottomans, many of the citizens left the town while the Uskoks went to the city of Senj on the Adriatic coast, where they continued fighting the Ottomans, they may have started to gather around Senj as early as 1520. The Ottoman raids and destruction brought Senj natives together with those from the Habsburg lands, Dalmatians and Italians.
At Senj, the Klis Uskoks were soon joined by other refugees from Novi Vinodolski in northwestern Croatia, from Otočac on the Gacka River, from other Croatian towns and villages. The new Uskok stronghold, screened by mountains and forests, was unassailable by cavalry or artillery. However, the fortress was admirably suitable to the armed uskoks who were excellent in guerrilla warfare; the Martolos were employed by the Ottomans to discourage Uskok penetration of Turkish territory, not profitable anyhow. Since the uskoks were checked on land and were paid their annual subsidy, they resorted to acts of piracy. Large galleys could not anchor in the bay of Senj, shallow and exposed to sudden gales. So, the uskoks fitted out a fleet of swift boats, which were light enough to navigate the smallest creeks and inlets of the shores of Illyria. Moreover, these boats were helpful in providing the uskoks a temporary landing on shore. With these they were able to attack numerous commercial areas on the Adriatic.
The uskoks saw. The whole city of Senj lived from piracy; the expeditions were blessed in the local church and the monasteries of the Dominicans and the Franciscans received tithes from the loot. After the War of the Holy League in 1537 against the Ottoman Empire, a truce between Venice and the Ottomans was created in 1539; this led to the evacuation of all Uskoks in Dalmatia in 1541 where they had been defending a Christian enclave in the mountains during the war. Throughout the following years the Habsburgs were at arms with the Turks, giving the Uskoks the opportunity to raid Bosnia and Dalmatia; the Uskoks were able to continue doing so up until 1547 when peace was established between the two, forcing the Uskoks to find other ways of making ends meet. As with other Slavic pirates, the Uskok territory was not suitable for any form of agriculture, forcing them to turn to piracy once more. Beginning as inland pirates, the Uskoci shortly turned to the seas once realizing the full potential of the geography of Senj.
The land was protected by thick forests and mountains while the jagged cliffs near the seas prevented warships from entering. The seas in the Gulf of Quarnero were quite rough, which posed navigational hazards as further protection from their enemies. Uskoks began their attacks upon Turkish sh
Inner Austria was a term used from the late 14th to the early 17th century for the Habsburg hereditary lands south of the Semmering Pass, referring to the Imperial duchies of Styria and Carniola and the lands of the Austrian Littoral. The residence of the Inner Austrian archdukes and stadtholders was at the Burg castle complex in Graz; the Inner Austrian territory stretched from the northern border with the Archduchy of Austria on the Alpine divide over Upper and Lower Styria down to Carniola, where the Lower and White Carniolan lands bordered on the Habsburg Kingdom of Croatia. In the west, the Carinthian lands stretched to the Archbishopric of Salzburg and the Habsburg County of Tyrol, while in the east, the Mur River formed the border with the Kingdom of Hungary. In the south, the County of Görz, which had passed to the House of Habsburg in 1500, Duino bordered on the Domini di Terraferma of Venice; the Imperial Free City of Trieste on the Adriatic Coast linked to assorted smaller possessions in the March of Istria around Pazin and the free port of Rijeka in Liburnia.
The Styrian lands had been ruled in personal union by the Babenberg dukes of Austria since 1192 and were seized with the Austrian lands by the Habsburg king Rudolph I of Germany upon his victory in the 1278 Battle on the Marchfeld. In 1335 Rudolph's grandson Duke Albert II of Austria received the Carinthian duchy with the adjacent March of Carniola at the hands of Emperor Louis the Bavarian as Imperial fiefs; when in 1365 Albert's son Duke Rudolf IV of Austria died at the age of 26, Emperor Charles IV enfeoffed his younger brothers Albert III with the Pigtail and Leopold III the Just, who however began to quarrell about the Habsburg heritage. By the 1379 Treaty of Neuberg they split late Rudolf's territories: The elder Albertinian line would rule in the Archduchy of Austria proper, while the younger Leopoldian line ruled the Styrian and Carniolan duchies subsumed under the denotation of "Inner Austria". At that time their share comprised Tyrol and the original Habsburg possessions in Swabia, called Further Austria.
When Leopold III was killed in the 1386 Battle of Sempach against the Old Swiss Confederacy, the Leopoldian heritage fell to his eldest son Duke William the Courteous, who upon the death of his uncle Albert III in 1395 raised claims to the Archduchy of Austria against Albert's only son and heir Duke Albert IV. Both sides came to an agreement to maintain the Neuberg division but to assert the common rule over the Habsburg lands. Therefore, from 1404 William acted as Austrian regent for his minor nephew Albert V; the Tyrolean and Further Austrian lands passed to William's younger brother Duke Leopold IV the Fat. When Duke William died without issue in 1406, the Leopoldian line was further split among his younger brothers: while Leopold IV assumed the regency in Austria, the Inner Austrian territories passed to Ernest the Iron, while the Tyrolean/Further Austrian passed to the youngest brother Frederick of the Empty Pockets. In 1457 the Leopoldian line again could assume the rule over the Austrian archduchy, when Ernest's son Duke Frederick V of Inner Austria succeeded his Albertine cousin Ladislaus the Posthumous who had died without issue.
1490 saw the reunification of all Habsburg lines, when Archduke Sigismund of Further Austria and Tyrol resigned in favour of Frederick's son Maximilian I. In 1512, the Habsburg territories were incorporated into the Imperial Austrian Circle; the dynasty however was split up again in 1564 among the children of deceased Emperor Ferdinand I of Habsburg. Under the Inner Austrian line founded by his younger son Archduke Charles II, the lands became a centre of the Counter-Reformation, carried out by the Jesuits with great determination; the cadet branch prevailed again, when Charles' son and successor as regent of Inner Austria, Archduke Ferdinand II, was crowned King of Bohemia in 1617, King of Hungary in 1618, succeeded his cousin Matthias in the Archduchy of Austria and as Holy Roman Emperor in 1619. His intentions to translate the absolutist and anti-reformationist Inner Austrian policies to the Crown of Bohemia sparked the Thirty Years' War; the Further Austrian/Tyrolean line of Ferdinand's younger brother Archduke Leopold V survived until the death of his son Sigismund Francis in 1665, whereafter all territories returned to common control with the other Austrian Habsburg lands.
The political administration of Inner Austria was centralized at Graz in 1763. Inner Austrian stadtholders went on to rule until the days of Empress Maria Theresa in the 18th century. Duchy of Styria Lower Styria Graz District: Marburg District Cilli District Upper Styria Bruck District Judenburg District Duchy of Carinthia Klagenfurt District Villach District Duchy of Carniola Laibach District Adelsberg District Neustadtl District Princely County of Gorizia and Gradisca Görz District Imperial Free City of Trieste Triest District Frederick became Archduke of Austria in 1457, Habsburg territories united in 1490. Ferdinand became Archduke of Austria in 1619. All Habsburg territories again united in 1655. History of Austria History of Slovenia